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Wales and the Britons, 350-1064$
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T. M. Charles-Edwards

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780198217312

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198217312.001.0001

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Two Ninth‐Century Writers

Two Ninth‐Century Writers

(p.437) 14 Two Ninth‐Century Writers
Wales and the Britons, 350-1064

T. M. Charles-Edwards

Oxford University Press

In the early‐ninth century the Historia Brittonum gives us some idea of how a North‐Welsh cleric might see the history of his people and its relations with neighbouring peoples and with the Romans. It was not a history of the Britons in the author's own lifetime or the recent past but of the period running up to the battle of Nechtanesmere. In the late‐ninth century a Welsh bishop, Asser, who came from St Davids, joined the household of Alfred, king of the West Saxons, a few years after his great victory against the Vikings. Asser wrote a Life of King Alfred, influenced by the model of Einhard's Life of Charlemagne but very different from it in important and revealing ways. Both texts reveal intellectual links between the Welsh, their neighbours in the British Isles, and the Continent.

Keywords:   Historia Brittonum, Merfyn Frych, Asser, Alfred, Sedulius Scottus, Welsh scholarship

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